In front of a sellout crowd of 33, 598 and up by 10 with 5 minutes remaining, half of a yard was all Washington State needed to blow the game wide open. The Crimson clad fans were on the verge of celebrating while talking about how much better their Cougs have gotten over a 2 week period. Instead, on first down from the 2, Teondray Caldwell fumbled and the battle tested Eagles from Eastern Washington marched the other way down the field.
EWU qb Kyle Padron came on for the next drive and led the Eagles 99 yards to throw a his second touchdown of the day to Brandon Kaufman (who also caught a 93 yard touchdown earlier in the game) and make WSU sweat bullets for the final moments. Eastern got the ball back and had a chance to win it on the final play from the Cougar 30, but Padron’s last ditch toss to the back of the endzone was knocked away and the Cougs survived.
Early in the game Wazzu was moving the ball well in spurts, as Jeff Tuel went 20-26 on the day and threw for 2 touchdowns while the running game produced over 100 yards and another score. The defense was sketchy though, allowing EWU to tie the game twice at 7 and 14 before finally stepping up and making a play. Linebacker Cyrus Coen made the interception that turned all of the momentum towards Washington State, returning it inside the 20 before Tuel found Isiah Myers for the second time in the endzone. After a booming 60 yard field goal to end the half by Andrew Furney, the Cougs were in control at 24-14.
Late in the 3rd quarter, the game changed when Jeff Tuel was hit around the knees and had to ice up on the sidelines. The energy in the stadium drained as he limped off and Eastern saw their chance. Still, backup Connor Halliday led the Cougs to the 1 before the Caldwell fumble. Then, after the touchdown by Kaufman, WSU was robbed of 2 touchdowns on holding calls, allowing the Eagles a final ditch effort.